Umm… What

This certainly falls under news that makes you go, “What the fuck?” Dvorak Uncensored posted a bizarre story that could only come from the Commonwealth. Australia is looking at banning porn with women having A cup breasts. From the article and no I’m not making this up:

Breasts came under the spotlight a year ago, as Senators Barnaby Joyce and Guy Barnett commenced a campaign against publicly available porn. Rounding up magazines from corner shops and filling stations, Senator Joyce claimed that publications featuring small-breasted women were encouraging paedophilia.

Hear that ladies? If you have small breasts you’re encouraging pedophilia! Obviously the next logical step here is to arrest and imprison all women who have A-cup sized breasts for distributing child pornography.

If You Aren’t Doing Anything Wrong

You have nothing to hide. I found some chilling news that everybody already expected from Says Uncle. Apparently the TSA has been searching the electronic devices of travelers and going so far as to copy files and send them to third parties. From the link:

• In a span of just nine months, CBP officials searched over 1,500 electronic devices belonging to travelers. Under the current policy, they were not required to justify a single one of these searches.

• Travelers’ laptops are not the only devices at risk of being examined, detained, or seized by the government. In fact, cell phones were the most commonly searched and seized devices between October 2008 and June 2009.

• Other types of devices that were searched and detained during this time period include digital cameras, thumb drives, hard drives, and even DVDs.

• Between July 2008 and June 2009, CBP transferred electronic files found on travelers’ devices to third-party agencies almost 300 times. Over half the time, these unknown agencies asserted independent bases for retaining or seizing the transferred files. More than 80 percent of the transfers involved the CBP making copies of travelers’ files.

We need to have a chat for a second. When you have sensitive information it should be encrypted. A great tool to created encrypted partitions is TrueCrypt. It’s a great utility that even goes so far as to allow you to create hidden encrypted partitions in such a way you have plausible deniability should you be asked for the encryption key to a hidden partition (You can’t prove it’s there so they can’t hold you indefinitely if you say there isn’t one). On all of my computers my entire home directory is encrypted (Mac OS has a feature called FileVault that allows for easy home directory encryption). Furthermore important files are then put into a TrueCrypt partition.

Another option to consider when traveling with important and secure data is to not have it on any device you travel with. Put the information on a server and download it when you get to your destination. Some companies have started doing this practice. Nobody can get your data if it doesn’t exist.

Either way this is important and scary information. I know almost everybody assumed this was the case but it’s finally been confirmed. Encrypt everything, period.

ATM Card Skimmers

Via Bruce Schneier’s blog we get some pictures of ATM card skimmers. Take a look at the pictures and you’ll see how hard it is to tell if you’re inserting your card into an ATM alone.

ATM skimmers are little devices that criminals attach to the card reader of an ATM. What it does is read the number from the card and somehow either store it for later retrieval or send the number to the criminal. It doesn’t interfere with the operation of the ATM so while the criminal gets your card number you simply get your money and receipt from the ATM. As the pictures in the linked article shows it’s very difficult to tell whether a skimmer as been attached to an ATM.

Sherlock Holmes Still Under Copyright, Interesting

Here is a piece of news I found rather shocking. The Sherlock Holmes property is still under copyright. This surprises me since the property is well over 100 years old (123 years according to the article).

Anyways the article has a long convoluted string of ownership transfers throughout Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s estate that allowed for the character Sherlock Holmes to stay copy righted. I’m sure Walt Disney will ensure Sherlock Holme’s copyright never expires via the aptly named “Mickey Mouse laws.”

Eight People Shot Dead in Virginia

A lone psycho in Virginia has managed to kill either people. Not many details have been given but this piece of information I thought was rather interesting:

At one point, a police helicopter was fired on and forced to land with a ruptured fuel tank.

That’s a lot more hardcore than usual. Normally in these cases the shooter would kill himself when the police arrived. Wait for the Brady Campaign and Bloomberg’s Posse to make an announcement saying the gun caused the crime. Also I’m betting they say it’s an AK-47 at some point.

Orders of Magnitude

Remember the big swine flu scare of 2009? Probably not I mean it’s not like there was wall to wall coverage about how it was going to be the flu to end the existence of our miserable species on this planet. Anyhow we’ve got some numbers of Oceania in regards to predicted deaths versus actual deaths. First:

Sir Liam pointed out that there were the same experts who predicted that up to 65,000 people might die from swine flu this winter – a figure which was later downgraded to 1,000.

So first they were predicting 65,000 people were going to die. Then they downgraded it to 1/65,000 of the original value. That’s 65 TIMES fewer people. And what was the actual death toll? Well:

To date there have been 360 deaths from swine flu in the UK (251 in England, 64 in Scotland, 28 in Wales and 17 in Northern Ireland). But the vast majority of those infected have had either a mild disease or no symptoms at all.

So a little over 1/3 the number of people they predicted were going to die. This once against demonstrates how the mass media will hype anything to get a story. Of course you know the governments of the United Kingdom will proclaim the lower number of deaths was a result of the actions taken by the said governments. Might as well take credit where credit isn’t due.

Further more I’m almost willing now to believe the conspiracy theories about the swine flu being a plague designed by the world governments to lower the population. I’m not seen a government plan or program not end up being a total failure yet. This story lends credibility to the conspiracy theorists.

GSM 3G Encryption Cracked

Are you on AT&T or T-Mobile? Bad news if you are the encryption use for their 3G networks has been cracked. Don’t panic quite yet though:

“This is a nice piece of work. This is breaking the math, not just an implementation,” said cryptographer Bruce Schneier. “They found a practical, related key attack. It’s not clear whether it can break actual traffic or whether it’s useful operationally. Related-key attacks are a form of cryptanalysis that showed up about 10 years ago, but they’re rare in the real world because you need the related keys.”

So what happened? Well the GSM guys took a cryptographic algorithm and decided to modify it. This is never a good idea. The modifications that were made actually broke it. This further proves that if you’re going to use complex mathematical algorithms make sure you know exactly what you’re doing. Head over to the link to get more details.

Doctor Rockzo Isn’t Going to Like This

Now this is funny. Via the No Agenda podcast I came across this little hilarity. For those of you whom don’t know there is no a “vaccine” for cocaine addiction. That’s right there is a drug people can take that prevent them from getting addicted to cocaine. But there is a slight problem. When given to somebody who is already addicted to cocaine it causes them to overdose.

The “vaccine” (I’m sorry but it should be called a vaccine, drug use it a choice not a disease) prevents the brain from absorbing cocaine and hence the use receives no high. Those who are already addicted take more and more cocaine hoping to get high. So this doesn’t cure their addiction at all, it only makes them overdose and die. Great.

Need Something To Read, How About The TSA Standard Operating Procedure

I like to read Dvorak Uncensored because I come across some great articles.

For instance I needed something to read in order to test out the new built in PDF reader on my Kindle and I see something worth reading on Dvorak’s site. Behold the TSA Standard Operating Procedure manual. Now you can read first hand how they abuse passengers do their job.